Browsing by Subject "making and design environments"

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  • Kumpulainen, Kristiina; Kajamaa, Anu; Rajala, Antti (Springer, 2019)
    Perspectives in cultural-historical research
    Making and design environments, often referred to as makerspaces, have aroused recent educational interest. These environments typically consist of spaces that support interest-driven engagement in hands-on creative activities with a range of digital artefacts. Although a variety of benefits from participating in making and design activities have been proposed, we currently have limited understanding of students’ learning experiences in makerspaces situated in schools. Following Hedegaards’ conceptualisations, we investigate motive-demand dynamics in students’ social activity in a school-based digital making and design environment, ‘The FUSE Studio’. We highlight our findings via vignettes selected from 65 h of video recordings of 94 students (aged between 9 and 12 years old) carrying out activities; the recordings were collected intermittently from an elective course over one semester. Our study illustrates how the students’ learning experiences were shaped through tension-laden interplay between the motives and demands of their activity situated across personal, relational and institutional contexts. The findings make visible how established ways of working and being at school interacted and came into tension with the students’ motive orientations, thereby limiting and at times transforming the social context of their learning. Our work also demonstrates how the analysis of motive-demand dynamics offers one useful conceptual tool to unpack students’ learning experiences in novel learning environments.
  • Kumpulainen, Kristiina; Kajamaa, Anu; Rajala, Antti (2018)
    This study investigates agency-structure dynamics in students and teachers' social activity in a novel design and making environment in the context of the Finnish school system, which has recently undergone major curricular reform. Understanding that agency is an important mediator of educational change, we ask the following questions: How are agency-structure dynamics manifested in the social activity of students and their teachers in a novel design and making environment? How do agency-structure dynamics create possibilities and obstacles for educational change? The data comprise 65 hours of video recordings and field notes of the social activity of students aged 9-12 years old (N = 94) and their teachers collected over a period of one semester. Our study shows how the introduction of the novel learning environment created a boundary space in which traditional teacher-centered activity patterns interacted and came into tension with student-centered modes of teaching and learning. Our study reveals three distinctive agency-structure dynamics that illuminate how the agentive actions of both teachers and students stabilized existing teacher-centered practices and, at other, times ruptured and broke away from existing patterns, thus giving rise to possibilities for educational change.